Six emerging artists you need to hear this September
The latest and greatest DJs and producers rising to the top this month. From futuristic UK funky and full-throttle techno to blissful soul and house, here's September 2020’s list of upcoming talent you should be keeping track of
The UK funky scene is burning bright right now and Bamz is one of the scene’s most promising torchbearers. Having made a name as producer and tour DJ for rapper Nadia Rose, in 2018 the South Londoner laid out a bold debut solo EP (‘Buggin’’), marking the beginning of a signature sound that brings a futuristic edge to UK funky, often blending that unmistakable swing with the epic scale of Afro house and a driving techno pulse. This year has seen a flurry of activity: Bamz appeared on Jamz Supernova’s Future Bounce with a ravey two-tracker, shared an acidic number on the ‘In Order To Care’ charity comp on R&S, dropped an EP of highly varied, yet London-centric, funky with Scratchclart, along with numerous self-released singles. Bamz shows no signs of slowing down either — in fact, quite the opposite. They’re currently working towards the launch of their own label Bamgarang Records. “First step is starting off with a mix series called Bamgarang Radio: Carnival Countdown — leading up to this year’s Carnival weekend,” they say. And there’s news of an EP for More Time on the way, which will introduce a brand new alias. Watch this space!
For fans of: Scratcha DVA, Jamz Supernova, SNØW
Bosnia-born, Copenhagen-based Ena Cosovic’s sound draws inspiration from early Detroit house and techno, melding moments of dub techno with ‘90s rave and acid. It’s a sound that gained her a residency at Copenhagen institution Culture Box, and one that resonates through her own productions too. Earlier this year, she released a collaboration with close friend Josefine Hellström from Sweden; called ‘Pisces Moon’, the EP came on John Osborn’s Dred Records, and was filled with classic TR-909 drums and luscious pads. Following that, the pair dropped an EP of cosmic grooves (titled ‘Saturn Retrograde’) on Eluize’s Berlin- based Night Tide label. Cosovic’s debut solo release will also be unveiled on vinyl towards the end of the year on Swedish label Svedjebruk, an imprint that she had a remix on back in 2017. Having already built a solid fan-base through her DJing, Cosovic’s name is becoming firmly set alongside the wave of exciting artists coming out of the Copenhagen scene right now.
For fans of: Willow, Zenker Brothers, Mama Snake
As resident for the longstanding London party Half Baked and co-founder of NorthSouth Records alongside Harry McCanna and Dale Mussington, Sam Bangura is a prominent force within the London house scene. As a HB resident, Bangura has played alongside the likes of Margaret Dygas and Zip in London, Raresh in Istanbul and at Romania’s beloved Club Guesthouse for the 10 Years Of Love tour. As well as throwing parties at Lion & Lamb, NorthSouth releases regularly fly off the shelves — the latest from McCanna under his alias Henry Hyde got love across the board, with radio plays on BBC Radio 1 from Saoirse earlier in the year. Bangura has also started sharing his own productions, with a track from the recent ‘Nottwood’ compilation and a sweltering remix for London label 4plae’s new Noir series dropping last month. Check out his b2b with Harry for One Records and mix for the Slapfunk podcast series for some irresistible groove.
For fans of: Leo Pol, Heredot, Voigtmann
One of the most hard-working DJs in Ukraine’s electronic music scene, Nastya Muravoya made a name for herself in her hometown of Kiev playing iconic parties such as Cxema, and overseas in other integral cities such as Berlin, Moscow and Krakow. As well as joining the line-ups for Unsound in Poland and Pohoda Festival in Slovakia last year, she’s made numerous appearances at Berghain. “Before I started playing, I just went to parties to dance. After a while I began to listen to music and in the future just look for tracks that I would dance all night long to. I found my sound very simply. If I like the track, I play it,” she says. “I listen to post-punk, synth-pop, punk rock, I think these styles influenced my sound.” Though club nights are on hold at the moment, she has been serving up driving techno via podcasts and live streams in the meantime, including a recent set for Boiler Room.
For fans of: Hyperaktivist, Daria Kolosova, SPFDJ
Few places can rival the excitement and innovation of New York’s electronic music scene right now. One local duo causing a lot of noise is Musclecars; formed of Brandon Weems and Craig Handfield, the pair push house, disco and associated sounds through their show on highly respected station, The Lot Radio, and — when parties were allowed, at least — their Coloring Lessons club-night, which has served as a place to celebrate the city’s Black and brown musical heritage, from the aforementioned dance-centric genres, to jazz, soul, funk and beyond, educating the new generation on the classic sounds of NYC. This year, Musclecars shared their first release — an EP of soulful house featuring singer Brandon Markell Holmes (who picked up a Grammy nomination for his work on Gorillaz’ 2017 album ‘Humanz’ — via toucan sounds, and return to the label this month with another four-tracker. This time, a downtempo collaboration with Brooklyn singer Tiff Ortiz sets the tone for the EP: blissful soul and jazz — a big, audible hug for these trying times.
For fans of: Larry Levan, Glenn Underground, DJ Harvey
Jumping between genres and tempos can be a risky business as a DJ, but the benefits — originality, respect, and the ability to turn a dancefloor on its head — are well worth it. London native Jetsss has been reaping these rewards for the best part of a decade, weaving her name into the very fabric of the capital’s club scene. A stalwart of radio, older fans will know her shows on NTS — as part of the License 2 Trill collective — Voldemort FM and Peckham’s Balamii, but it’s on Rinse FM that she now holds court, her residency approaching its second anniversary. While club sets are out of the picture for the time being, on the airwaves Jetsss plays everything from hip-hop, R&B, grime and trap to a plethora of syncopated and breakbeat-laden club sounds, like garage, UK funky and footwork. She shared her first EP — a collection of chilled-out edits — at the start of lockdown, and just this month dropped some twinkly jungle cuts too. With an arsenal of dubs still tucked away, expect more original music from Jetsss to land throughout the rest of 2020.
For fans of: LCY, Amy Becker, Slackk